And this is our satisfaction, to persevere till our work is finished. You do not know how near you may be to the completion of your work. You may not have to toil many more days. The chariot-wheels of eternity are sounding behind you. Hasten, Christian!
Use the moments zealously, for they are very precious. You are like the work-girl with her last inch of candle. Work hard! The night cometh wherein no man can work. “I paint for eternity,” said the painter; so let us do, let us work for God as those whose work will endure when selfish labours shall burn as wood, hay, and stubble in the last tremendous fire.
To finish his work! To finish his work! Be this our aim. When the great missionary to the Indians was dying, the last thing that he did was to teach a little child its letters; and when someone marvelled to see so great a man at such a work, he said he thanked God that, when he could no longer preach, he had at least strength enough left to teach that poor little child.
So would he finish his life’s work, and put in the last little stroke to complete the picture. It should be our meat and our drink to push on, never finding our meat in what we have done, but in what we are doing, and still have to do; finding constantly our refreshment in the present work of the present hour as God enables us to perform it, spending and still being spent for him.
Never let us say, “I have had my day; let the young people take their turn.” Suppose the sun said, “I have shone so long, I shall not rise to-morrow.” Imagine the stars in their beauty saying, “We have for so long a time shot our golden arrows through the darkness, we will now retire for ever.”
What if the air should refuse to give us breath, or the water should no longer ripple in its channels, or if all nature should stand still because of what it once did,—what death and ruin would there be!
No, Christian, there must be no loitering for you; each day be this your meat, to do the will of him that sent you, and to finish his work.
C. H. Spurgeon, “A Golden Sentence,”